During an interview with Michel Martin on the NPR talk show "Tell Me More," Laverne Cox said that she grew up in Mobile, Alabama.
Laverne Cox has spoken in many interviews about the bullying and lack of support she received from both peers and teachers as a child in Alabama. Her third grade teacher warned her mother that Cox was sick and "would end up in New Orleans wearing a dress if we don't get him into therapy right away." As an adult, in her capacity as an LGBT activist, Cox has lectured at many universities, including New Orleans's Tulane (where she did indeed wear a dress).
Cox attended high school at the Alabama School of Fine Arts, a state-wide, public, magnet, boarding and day school in Birmingham. Admission to ASFA is by competitive application and (depending on the area of arts interest) audition. Cox started as a creative-writing major and later switched to the dance program.
Cox's nomination for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series - for her performance in Orange Is the New Black (2013) - at the 2014 Primetime Emmy Awards makes her the first openly transgender person to be nominated for any award in the history of the Emmys.
Cox was named one of OUT Magazine's 100 most influential gay, lesbian, bisexual, or transgender people for 2013.